Spatter Cone


Photograph by T.T. English, U.S. Geological Survey, April 30, 1982.

A spatter cone is a "low, steep-sided cone of spatter built up on fissure or vent; it is usually of basaltic material" (Bates and Jackson, 1980, p. 598). Spatter is globs of lava thrown through the air. The spatter cone in this photo formed during t he April 30, 1982, eruption near Halemaumau Crater. Numerous spatter cones formed along a 0.3 mile (0.5 km) fissure that was active for 20 hours. These spatter cones can be visited by walking beyond the Halemaumau Crater overlook to the intersection of Halemaumau and Byron's Ledge trails.


Photograph by J.D. Griggs, U.S. Geological Survey, March 26, 1984.

A spatter rampart is a " ridge of congealed pyroclastic material, usually basaltic, built up on a fissure or vent" (Takahashi and Griggs, 1987). Pyroclastic refers to fragmented volcanic material ejected from a volcano. A vent is an opening at the Earth's surface through which volcanic material is extruded. The spatter rampart shown in this photo was the principal vent of the 1984 eruption on the northeast rift zone of Mauna Loa Volcano.



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